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10/07/2017

Joel and Tracy Zalewski are the 2017 Couples Champions

Athens, AL -  The final day of the 2017 American Couples Series National Championship hosted by American Bass Anglers, is in the books.  Running out of Lakepoint Resort State Park in Eufaula, AL Joe Zalewski-Tracy Harp Zalewski of Nashville, TN took home the grand prize of $4000. The married couple fished in the Kentucky Lake division, they brought in a five-fish limit on Day One that weighed 9.93 pounds which put them in sixth place going into the final day. On day two, they brought in another five-fish limit that weighed 13.77 pounds which gave them an overall total weight of 23.70 pounds. They were able to anchor their win with a 3.12-pound bass for both days. 

“The lake was fishing very tough and it was also very inconsistent on both days. We started fishing deep as the days got hotter. We mostly used crankbaits and big worms to catch our fish,” stated Joe. “We made a game plan coming into the tournament and stuck to it. We did not see anyone else fishing the tournament doing what we were doing. We really enjoyed fishing even though it was tough,” stated Tracy. She also added that her mother was smiling down on them.

Coming in second was the of Sean Capes-Kathy Capes. The married couple fishes in the Georgia division and lead the tournament after day one by catching a five-fish limit that weighed 14.33 pounds. On day two, they were not so lucky and was only able to bring in a four-fish bag that weighed 7.98 pounds. This gave them an overall total of 22.31 pounds. They anchored their bag with a 5.88-pound big bass and took home $800.

“It was tough fishing on both days, we used shallow crankbaits to catch most of our fish. We were able to catch a limit on day 1 and the wind shifted directions on us the second day and we were not able to get the last bite we needed to make a limit. We want to give a shout out to our directors Jeff and Amanda Maddox, they do an excellent job and put on great tournaments,” said Sean. 

Placing third was Thomas and Melissa Bancroft. The married couple fished in the South Carolina Division and was in second after day one with a five-fish limit that weighed 11.91 pounds. On day two, they brought in another five-fish limit that weighed 9.50 pounds giving them an overall weight 21.41 pounds. They took home a check for $575 for their efforts. 

“We used a Zoom floating orange magnum worm to catch some of our fish. We also used a spinner bait and an Ole Monster Tilapia Worm Texas rigging in about 4-16 feet of water. We were fishing creek channels on the Georgia side of the lake,” stated Thomas.

The 2017 Couples Angler of The Year team was John and Susan Mills of Leesville, SC.  The married couple knew they were in the running for the title and was thrilled to take the honor. 

“Two years ago, we lost AOY by one point, we knew we were up in points, but didn’t expect to take it so this is a wonderful surprise.  We would like to thank our sponsors JC’S Outdoors and Yeti,” said John and Susan.

Allan Raines of Marianna, FL had the overall men’s big bass of the tournament, with a 5.82 pound largemouth he landed on Day One.  He took home $325 for his catch.

“I caught my fish using a black trick worm, fishing in shallow grass right of the channel in the late afternoon,” said Raines.

Rhonda Ford of Cave Spring, GA had the overall women’s big bass of the tournament with a 4.12 pound largemouth that she brought in on Day one.  She took home $325 for her fish.

“I was fishing a frog in shallow primrose grass, when I caught the big one, thanks to my partner Mike for putting us on them,” said Ford. 

This event has been hosted by the Eufaula-Barbour Chamber of Commerce.

The 2018 ABA American Couples Series Championship will be held on September 16-21, 2018 at Lake Hartwell. The 2018 event is hosted by the Anderson County Convention & Visitors Bureau.

All ABA American Couples Series events involve a team format with each team composed of one man and one woman. Although many married couples compete together as teams, some teams consist of boyfriend and girlfriend combinations, parent-child combinations or just two friends. Contestants between 12 and 18 years old may participate with a parent’s written permission. 

The top angling couples from across the nation earn the right to compete in the annual American Bass Anglers Couples Series National Championship tournament.
About American Bass Anglers: American Bass Anglers is committed to providing low cost, close to home tournaments for the weekend angler and at the same time offer each competitor an upward path for individual angler progression. For more information about American Bass Anglers, the Ram Truck Open Series, the American Fishing Tour or the American Couples Series, visit www.americanbassanglers.com.

American Bass Anglers, Inc. is supported by Ram Trucks, Triton Boats, Mercury Outboards, Carlisle Tires, GEICO, Berkley, Abu Garcia, T-H Marine, Livingston Lures, Best Western Hotels, Maui Jim, Power Pole, Simms, Garmin, and SiriusXM Marine Weather. American Bass Anglers, Inc. can be contacted at (256) 232-0406 or by visiting americanbassanglers.com
 

 

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American Fishing Tour Upcoming Events

New Jersey 7/07/2018 Hopatcong
Georgia - Eufaula 7/07/2018 Lake Eufaula
KY Lake 7/07/2018 Kentucky Lake
Florida - West 7/07/2018 Toho
Kentucky Central 7/07/2018 Barkley
Florida Harris Chain 7/07/2018 Harris Chain
Arkansas River 7/07/2018 Little Rock
Alabama North 7/07/2018 Guntersville
New York North 7/08/2018 Wynetta/Lamoka
North Carolina East 7/14/2018 Neuse/Trent River
Virginia 7/14/2018 Gaston
Kansas - Big Hill 7/14/2018 Bone Creek
Connecticut 7/14/2018 Candlewood
Minnesota 7/14/2018 Koronis
Maryland 7/15/2018 Potomac
Illinois North 7/15/2018 Mississippi River Pool 19
Florida - Toho 7/15/2018 Toho
Minnesota 7/15/2018 Green Lake-Kandiyohi CO
New Hampshire 7/15/2018 Waukewan
New Jersey 7/21/2018 Greenwood
North Carolina Central 7/21/2018 Chowan
Alabama Northwest 7/21/2018 Wilson Lake
Missouri - Stockton 7/21/2018 Stockton
Southeast North Carolina 7/21/2018 Waccamaw River
Kentucky Central 7/21/2018 Kentucky Lake
Georgia - Westpoint 7/21/2018 West Point
Kansas South 7/22/2018 Yates Center
Massachusetts-Central New England 7/22/2018 Quaboag
Massachusetts - Western 7/27/2018 Longpond
North Carolina East 7/28/2018 Tar/Pamlico River
New York North 7/28/2018 Thousand Islands
Missouri 7/28/2018 Truman
Connecticut 7/28/2018 Ct River
Louisiana Central 7/28/2018 Toledo Bend
Ohio-Central 7/28/2018 O'Shaughnessy Reservoir
Lynchburg / Roanoke VA 7/28/2018 Smith Mountain
Alabama East Central 7/28/2018 Neely Henry
Oklahoma North 7/28/2018 Sooner Lake
KY Lake 7/28/2018 Kentucky Lake
New Jersey 7/29/2018 Hopatcong
Minnesota 7/29/2018 Forrest Lake
Virginia 8/04/2018 Chickahominy River

Plus Team Tour 2018 Schedule

Alabama

Dates Lake/Info Register
7/01/2018 Weiss

Tennessee/Kentucky

     
9/23/2018 Kentucky

 

 

 

 

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Tennessee Northeast 7/14/2018 Watts Bar
Kentucky 7/15/2018 Kentucky Lake
Alabama North 7/21/2018 Guntersville
Kentucky 8/5/2018 Kentucky Lake
Alabama North 8/11/2018 Guntersville
Oklahoma 8/11/2018 Keystone
Oklahoma 9/8/2018 Hudson

 

Open Series 2018 Upcoming Events

New York 7/07/2018 Cayuga
Ohio 7/14/2018 Ohio River/ Tanner's Creek
New York 7/21/2018 1000 Islands
Kentucky 7/28/2018 Kentucky Lake
Ohio 8/04/2018 Ohio River/Maysville
Virginia 8/11/2018 Gaston
New York 8/18/2018 Lake Champlain
Mississippi 8/18/2018 Pickwick
South Texas 8/25/2018 Lake Conroe
Kentucky 8/25/2018 Kentucky Lake
Area 3 Championship 9/08/2018 Eufaula
East Texas 9/08/2018 Toledo Bend
South East Texas 9/15/2018 Sam Rayburn
Area 8 Championship 9/22/2018 Kerr
Area 9 Championship 9/29/2018 Chautauqua
Area 5 Championship 9/29/2018 Kissimmee Chain
Area 7 Championship 10/06/2018 Lake Texoma
Area 1 Championship 10/06/2018 Pickwick
Area 4 Championship 10/06/2018 Norman
Area 2 Championship 10/13/2018 Kentucky Lake
Area 6 Championship 10/20/2018 Toledo Bend